WIT Press


Urban Planning And Architecture Of The Historic City Of Ghadames, Libya: Lessons From The Past For Cities Of The Future

Price

Free (open access)

Paper DOI

10.2495/STR050011

Volume

83

Pages

12

Published

2005

Size

1,366 kb

Author(s)

A. Abufayed, A. Rghei & A. Aboufayed

Abstract

Remotely located about 600 km from the Mediterranean sea, the historic city of Ghadames has emerged as the Sahara desert's most important cultural and trade center for many centuries thanks to the outstanding qualities of its urban planning and vernacular architecture. The objective of this paper is to describe these qualities and demonstrate their effectiveness specifically in light of the physical environment constraints and in comparison with the newly built city of Ghadames. Threats to the sustainability of both cities are also defined along with ways to overcome them based on lessons from traditional and new architecture. 1 Introduction The historic city of Ghadames (HCG), Libya, is located in the Sahara desert. Despite the remote location and arid climate, the HCG has evolved as the Sahara’s most important cultural and trade center for many centuries thanks to the extraordinary qualities of its urban planning and vernacular architecture. The objective of this paper is to describe these qualities and demonstrate their effectiveness and adaptability to modern cities as well. To achieve this objective, the city’s historic evolution and significance are presented followed by a

Keywords